German was required as a second language for those majoring in physics and chemistry in the college I attended in the 1950’s. German was the most extensive language used in scientific journals and research papers. The two decades following World War I found Germany to arguably be the best educated country in the world.
During this same period, fiery rhetoric was spreading through the country from those irate about the impact of the Treaty of Versailles. The speeches grew louder, inflaming many citizens agreeing with the condemnation. Soon populism spread throughout the country which led to extreme nationalism. The nationalism soon allowed fascism, leading to the murder of 6 million Jews as well as the handicapped, Poles, Slavs and Russians. The estimated total of the genocide exceeded 12 million human beings while this best educated Germanic culture remained quiet. Nationalism is extremely dangerous in any culture and must be recognized before it is out of control.
Of course, one might ask: “What does all this have to do with me”?
Submitted by Virtual Newsroom